Forum Updating and Organization?
#1
Just wanted to say that I love the availability of so much information in the forums, but at the same time, too much information can also lead to information overload for all involved, from noobs like myself to hardcore developers. As we are in Dharma beta 3 by this point and there is so much information that has either gone stagnant or been rendered redundant (by the many brilliant coders who have put so much effort into making XBMC the best damn media center ever), perhaps it might be a good idea to begin organizing some of this information, archiving that which is only applicable to older builds, and cleaning up the format so that we as a community can move forward into the future of modern home theater.

What I'm suggesting is that we update the forums to separate the old from the new first, and then organize the new information in a much more user friendly format for both noobs looking to learn to use xbmc to hardcore coders trying to keep up with the latest buzz about building their add-ons.

I think that it would be a good idea to divide the forums into functions, while keeping the separation between help and support, development, and general conversation. Perhaps in the subforum for help and support, it might be rational to isolate each function that xbmc provides, and develop subforums for those items (such as programming remotes, finding new add-ons, integrating backend programs, configuring skins, etc.) At the same time, in the development forum, it might be good to concentrate on different functions which xbmc provides. Functions such as file support, pvr development, and others. Also, Perhaps a specific section dedicated solely to log files could be linked to from the separate subforums in order to not distract from the communication aspect of the discussions regarding bugs and development issues with a big window full of code. Doing so would allow it to easily be opened in a separate window and viewed in sync while reading the forum discussion you are taking part in, allowing you to retain the context of why you are reading the code in the first place as you move through it.

All I'm saying is that the current system is rapidly becoming more and more xenophobic and as a result, I think it's probable that this is hampering overall development, as well as probably eating up a lot of server space with frivolous and repeat conversations. I have seen many instances where developers or those who've been around have redirected questions from both noobs and developers alike to the proper forum because it had simply been bumped off the first few pages by a quagmire of repeated code copied into trivial threads.

Feel free to hammer me with insults for being a noob and a dbag for bringing this up. I have much respect for all of you developers who have worked hard to bring us this amazing system, and I hope to be able to contribute back to the effort in some way other than the money I've donated...

Btw, if you're a noob like me, enjoying this software without knowing anything about programming, maybe you should think about how much effort is going into all of this and consider making a donation to the people who are making your living room that much more awesome with every keystroke...Huh
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#2
Not a bad idea at all.

Both your main point and the donation suggestion.
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#3
i think they should make new sub forums for each beta/final release that comes out and later get ride of the older ones. This way its related to the current beta and much better to find out whats going on with that version.
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#4
Completely agree with everything you just said up until deleting old release pertinent information. I think that it is good to have that information archived somewhere for those who either can use it to improve current releases, or for those who, upon finding a relic in an old xbox, can turn it into a kick ass media center.

All in all though, it wouldn't be difficult to begin with dharma and separate all the old from the new by simply dividing into "pre-camelot" and "post camelot" info for the time being, with camelot add-ons and info that are yet to be integrated into dharma going into a third directory at which point they are weeded out as they become integrated into dharma releases. A lot of the camelot add-ons can still be used in dharma, and it would be a waste to completely negate their integration into future builds by hiding them in back issue archives where they'll never be seen again...
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#5
A thorough cleanup is much needed for the Dharma stable release. Sooner rather than later...
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#6
Exclamation 
Believe it or not I just jumped to the forum to suggest this opinion too.

I'm now member for about 2 years and so much changed since then and with the Dharma Release I would also appreciate a cleanup and sorting of the forum.
With Dharma I think about to renew my XBMC solution at home and then I will need this forum Rolleyes ... oh and also will donate for the first time Big Grin

modernninja Wrote:... it would be a waste to completely negate their integration into future builds by hiding them in back issue archives where they'll never be seen again...

Possibly someone can make a sticky Thread with a list of all working addons in Dharma!?!
With that mess of threads at the moment a lot of information already get lost!

Cheers,
David
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#7
davidw Wrote:Possibly someone can make a sticky Thread with a list of all working addons in Dharma!?!
With that mess of threads at the moment a lot of information already get lost!

Cheers,
David

That is the whole point of the addon browser. If it isnt in the addon browser, it isn't compatible / maintained.
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#8
Yes you're right but if you have a problem with an addon then you will find the addon thread easier...
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#9
davidw Wrote:Yes you're right but if you have a problem with an addon then you will find the addon thread easier...

Disagree.

A sticky thread of what is and isnt working is not going to be maintained and would likely be out of date more often than not.

If something is in the add-on repo and is broken it will be marked as such. When it is fixed it will auto update providing you have enabled this.

If things are broken and stay broken / become unmaintained then they are removed from the repo.

Now if you are having problems with a plugin that is different. Then that is what the forums are for to a degree. However if that doesn't work contain the plugin dev/maintainer - they are the ones who are ultimately responsible for a plugin.
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#10
prae5 Wrote:Now if you are having problems with a plugin that is different. Then that is what the forums are for to a degree. However if that doesn't work contain the plugin dev/maintainer - they are the ones who are ultimately responsible for a plugin.

With that sticky list I meant that you see there all integrated addons (the same list that you see in the addon-browser) and when you have a problem you can click there and don't have to search too long.
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#11
prae5 Wrote:That is the whole point of the addon browser. If it isnt in the addon browser, it isn't compatible / maintained.

Well, what about those add-ons from camelot that didn't get picked up and integrated in dharma yet, but which still have workable code and useful information to be picked up...I think there should definitely be a work in progress section for all of this information so that developers know that it once existed for previous builds, and can gain access to it to possibly integrate into future builds...

just because it isn't currently compatible or currently maintained doesn't mean that there isn't someone out there willing to do the work to make it so without having to start again from scratch...I'm working on learning code myself, and hopefully at some point, maybe I'll be able to pick up one of these abandoned projects and bring it back to good, while learning from it at the same time.
Silverstone Case with Windows 7 HTPC(considering Ubuntu) with Biostar TA790GX A3+ w/ Quad-core Phenom 2 processor, 8GB DDR3 G-Skill Ripjaw RAM, Zotac nvidia gt430 gpu w/hdmi 1.4a, Pioneer BD-S02 Bluray Combo drive, Mygica HD Thriller ATSC/NTSC Clear QAM Hybrid PCI PVR card, USB-UIRT, Onkyo HT-S9300THX 7.1 System, 50" Panasonic Viera 3DTV (TC-P50GT25), Verizon Fios with Motorola HD DVR, XBOX 360 w/ Kinect, Panasonic DMP-BDT100 FullHD 3D Bluray Player, X10 NStinct Remote
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